Police powers increased after Easton knife attack

A police van parked close to a block of flats
The extra search powers have been introduced after the incident overnight [BBC]

Enhanced stop and search powers are in place in parts of Bristol following a knife attack that left two people injured overnight.

Avon and Somerset Police introduced the measures follow an assault near Stapleton Road in Easton at around 04:40 BST on Sunday morning.

Officers have now arrested 11 men in relation to the incident, all on suspicion of attempted murder. They remain in police custody.

Two men were taken to hospital to receive treatment for their injuries, which are no longer believed to be life-threatening, but one is still in a serious condition.

A police van in the middle of a police cordon in Easton, Bristol
The enhanced stop and search powers are in place in the Easton area [BBC]

The enhanced powers were introduced from from 19:00 BST on Sunday and cover the Easton area.

They will be in place initially for 24 hours and will allow officers to stop and search any people or vehicles for a weapon in order to prevent "serious violence".

The force said their officers who are deployed in this way are briefed on the powers to ensure they are "used correctly".

It added that the restrictions could be extended by another 24 hours if necessary.

Supt Lisa Simpson, who authorised the increased measures, said: "We do not underestimate the concerns of the local community following this recent incident of knife crime and serious violence in Bristol.

"It is because of this that we have made the decision to bring in the section 60 powers for our officers.

"Alongside this, they will also have a section 60AA power which allows officers to ask people to remove face coverings if they have reason to believe it is being worn to conceal their identity."

The force said this does not mean people will be stopped indiscriminately and officers will still follow the usual stop-and-search processes.

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